Doctrine of Comparative Fault - Pure Comparative Negligence California
In Li v. Yellow Cab Co. (1975) 13 Cal.3d 804, the California Supreme Court adopted the system of pure comparative negligence. (Id. at pp. 828-829.)
"The fundamental purpose of the system of pure comparative negligence shall be to assign responsibility and liability for damage in direct proportion to the amount of negligence of each of the parties." (Id. at p. 829.) the doctrine of comparative fault generally requires comparative fault analysis regardless of whether the parties' respective negligence is considered ordinary, gross, reckless, or willful and wanton. (City of Santa Barbara v. Superior Court (2007) 41 Cal.4th 747; Sorensen v. Allred (1980) 112 Cal.App.3d 717,"No defensible reason exists for categorizing wilful and wanton misconduct as a different kind of negligence not suitable for comparison with any other kind of negligence.
The adoption of comparative negligence in Li rendered such a separate category unnecessary since contributory negligence on the part of a plaintiff was no longer a total bar to recovery for a tortious injury.".)
However, "a party who commits intentional misconduct should not be entitled to escape responsibility for damages based upon the negligence of the victim ... ." (Weidenfeller v. Star & Garter (1991) 1 Cal.App.4th 1) One court noted there is "an unbroken line of authority barring apportionment based on comparative fault where ... the defendant has committed an intentional tort e.g., battery and the injured plaintiff was merely negligent." (Heiner v. Kmart Corp. (2000) 84 Cal.App.4th 335; cf. Thomas v. Duggins Construction Co., Inc. (2006) 139 Cal.App.4th 1105 recognizing deterrence and punishment policy reasons preclude a reduction of an intentional tortfeasor's liability in proportion to the plaintiff's contributory negligence.)